A year ago after I went out with friends and had a few too many drinks during the night, I woke up the next day to find my lips irritated. During the course of the day they swelled to the point of reminding me of the times my lips were injected with novacaine preceding dental procedures. The swelling went down after a day or two, but the irritation persisted and eventually the outer layer of the skin on my lips peeled off.
Since that day, I have had persistant problems with my lips. At almost any time of the day they are irritated--the inner portions of my lips are red and inflammed, and my lips feel like they would I would imagine given extreme dehydration coupled with sunburn.
Every once in a while, primarily after the consumption of alcohol, pop, coffee, tea, chocolate or other "irritants," as well as after occasional cigarettes, my lips will become even more inflammed, swelling and cracking at the corners.
I originally went to the doctor after my initial problems, and he thought that I was having an allergic reaction to something. However, given no changes in diet as well as no consistent changes in diet since that point, I cannot imagine that this is the case.
I have also tried to make a contentitious effort to drink more water, and less more irritating substances, as well as quit smoking. However, the problem persists.
I have two other problems of which I believe are unrelated. They include quickly receding gum lines (and I'm 25), as well as a mass in a lymph node in my neck that I will be getting checked out next week.
Has anyone else had these problems? I have heard that you are not supposed to keep applying chapstick when problems persist. What else can I do to end the persistent pain and annoyance?